Why You Need a Mesothelioma Lawyer: The Knowledge Every American Needs
Approximately 3,000 people are diagnosed with Mesothelioma every year in the United States. Only 10 percent of the sufferers of this type of cancer will survive five years beyond their diagnosis. Most will succumb to the illness in under two years. People diagnosed early with the disease are the ones that typically survive longer. By the time it enters the second or third stages it becomes much more complex to treat. Approximately 75 percent of all mesothelioma cases involve the lungs, but the cancer can also invade the stomach. A mesothelioma diagnosis is devastating, but there is legal help available for the people affected by this traumatic illness.
What causes mesothelioma?
Exposure to radiation and some chemicals can cause mesothelioma, but 80 percent of all cases are the result of an exposure to Asbestos. This form of cancer was extremely rare until the industrial revolution was in full swing. Once people were spending several hours a day in environments where the material was found the disease suddenly became more common. Breathing in airborne particulates is the most common method of exposure and this is why the disease is predominantly found in the lungs.
Who is at risk of contracting mesothelioma?
There are numerous industries where asbestos was once common. These include the construction industry and the automotive industry. However, many people outside of these industries were exposed too. For example, homeowners remodeling their property or people living in neighborhoods with factories that used the material. The United States has still not banned the use of asbestos despite the amount of evidence regarding how dangerous the material is to humans.
Are there any early warning signs?
Exposure to asbestos can lead to another lung disease known as asbestosis. This condition can be mistaken for COPD or asthma because it causes shortness of breath and frequent coughing. The problem arises several years after exposure and can worsen over time. There is no treatment for the disease. Many victims also suffer from a thickening of the pleura, the outer lining of the lungs. This condition also makes it difficult to breath comfortably. Anyone that believes they were exposed to asbestos in their lifetime and has since developed any breathing disorder should speak to their physician about the possibility of their medical concerns being related to asbestos. Regular medical testing and professional observation will increase the likelihood of an early diagnosis of mesothelioma and potentially a longer life expectancy.
Why is a Mesothelioma Lawyer necessary?
It can take over 20 years for the disease to appear after exposure. This is why the diagnosis is commonly made in older adults. Because of the many potential causes of exposure and the length of time from exposure to diagnosis it is difficult for the average person to prove where the illness was contracted. A Mesothelioma Lawyer that understands this disease and the history of mesothelioma cases can build a more detailed case and has the resources to perform the research necessary. They know the steps for filing a successful case, are aware of any local statute of limitations and do everything possible to encourage a quick resolution.
Is a mesothelioma lawsuit necessary or even fair?
It is easy to feel that people are seeking revenge or trying to earn a profit after a diagnosis, but this is not the case. These lawsuits are about protecting the victims and future employees. The dangers of asbestos were known as far back as the 1920s and many employers failed to create any safety protocols for their workers. They ignored the problem and people have died as a result of their carelessness. Unfortunately, many executives only understand profit and loss and they will only make the necessary changes when lawsuits threaten their profit. It is because of lawsuits of this kind that people have safer work environments today. A Mesothelioma Lawyer will demand better safety standards and more employer responsibility to hopefully reduce work-related illnesses and unnecessary deaths in future generations.
How do lawsuits help someone that is terminally ill?
A mesothelioma settlement and the many changes that have already taken place with safety procedures in industrial environments will not save someone that has already received a diagnosis. What it will do is cover the extensive medical costs of the victim and make it possible for the family to afford the best care to keep them comfortable during this period of time. Many families use the funds to take time off from work to spend the last days with their loved ones. Families that have already lost loved ones often need assistance to pay for funeral costs, end-of-life care and household finances. These settlements make it possible for the additional victims to have some financial relief.
How do people begin an asbestos lawsuit?
Contacting mesothelioma lawyers is the first step after a diagnosis is made. They will interview the patient or their family members to compile a work history in order to determine when the individual was exposed. They help families to file for disability or other available forms of compensation. Funds may already be available from a class-action lawsuit that was settled previously. Employees of the companies that settled a lawsuit are provided compensation from a trust fund established for this purpose. It is very rare for any victims or their family members to ever need to appear in court. The entire process can take several months or longer, but the amount of time the family needs to spend on the case is minimal. Most people will have little to do with the case aside from giving a simple deposition, providing any necessary paperwork and receiving updates or discussions of possible settlements.